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Whether you’re visiting Atlanta, Georgia, or live in the area, when it comes to enjoying a meal out with friends—including your furry best friend—mouthwatering options abound. Many restaurants make room for pups, so you and your pooch can nosh on apps or just grab a drink (hey, it’s hot out there!).
Here are 11 of Atlanta’s great dog-friendly restaurants (in alphabetical order):
Ice cream. Pup cups. Need I say more? If you need more convincing why Butter & Cream in Decatur and off the BeltLine in Old Fourth War is a must-go, these decadent treats might help: carrot cake, lemon bars, blondies, and small-batch ice cream made into everything from floats to sandwiches. Try a sorbet for something light or go all out and indulge in signature flavors like OG Goodness (chunks of St. Louis butter cake wedged into brown sugar ice cream) and Butterscotch Brownie (with brownies made in-house). Dairy-free is an option, too. Pup-friendly frozen treats include pumpkin honey, peanut butter, and banana—admittedly, the flavor lineup for pups is less extensive than it is for humans, but the four-footed clientele doesn’t seem to mind.
Located in Midtown, Cypress Street Pint & Plate recently expanded its patio during the coronavirus pandemic to accommodate additional outdoor diners and their dogs. You can scarf down a donut burger, sweet potato nachos, or salmon ceviche while your pooch laps up a water bowl. When it’s chilly, the are space heaters and a fire pit. The outdoor TVs are year-round fixtures, especially popular on game days.
This Virginia-Highland eatery packs some serious dog culture. You and your pooch can hang out on the patio—a craft cocktail and pub fare for you, water bowl and puppuccino for your friend. Check out the restaurant’s Insta to see the dog of the week, if you can handle the cuteness. The logo is a dog. If you need a T-shirt that says “HI, CAN I PET YOUR DOG?” that’s available. And the name? Grateful Dead fans will recognize it from the San Francisco venue where the band often played. Plus, owners Benjie and Jamey Shirah, who grew up with dogs on a quail plantation in South Georgia, are longtime dog lovers. Benjie’s French bulldog, Lola, and Jamey’s Boykin spaniel, Charlotte, can frequently be spotted at The Family Dog.
Dog park meets full-service bar, this unusual establishment is the only one of its kind in Georgia and probably first in the country (at least, founder Stephen Ochs thinks so). Already, Fetch is doing so well that five new locations will open this year. While your pup runs free in the mural-enclosed dog park (photo op, anyone?), you can kick back with beer, wine, liquor, and cocktails served from the signature retro airstream. The Frose and Hump Day Hooch—the latter made with nitro cold-brew coffee, bourbon, honey, creamer, and a dash of sea salt—are popular, especially refreshing in summer. Come hang out ‘til midnight.
If you’ve spent much time in Atlanta post-2010, you know the BeltLine (the rails-to-trails project that circles the city for some 22 miles) is one of its hottest attractions. It has the added perk of being free, though you may have to pay for parking. Dogs love to come walk their owners, but all that walking can work up an appetite. The solution? A hearty plate of ribs or BBQ fries loaded with crispy pulled pork at Ladybird Grove & Mess Hall. The restaurant boasts the largest outdoor space on the BeltLine, including a beer garden, and gladly welcomes dogs with treats and water.
Stretching the definition of Atlanta, Lazy Dog Restaurant & Bar is technically in the suburb of Peachtree Corners. But why worry about geography when there’s delicious food that you and your pal can enjoy together? The human menu has BBQ bison meatloaf, pot roast, and a PB&J burger. Also apple-huckleberry pie. The canine menu has a hamburger patty or chicken breast, served with brown rice, veggies, and complimentary water. The whole family’s happy.
Along the east side of BeltLine, Nina & Rafi specializes in Italian comfort food with a menu conveniently divided into “pizza” and “not pizza.” My advice: get the pizza. There’s something strange and wonderful called Detroit Style French Toast Pizza that’s available for weekend brunch. You’ll also find plenty of Italian wine, beer and cocktails. Grab a picnic table on the large patio where your four-legged pal can enjoy watching bikers and joggers passing by.
What’s the absolute best dog-friendly restaurant in Atlanta? The jury is still out, possibly looking for bones buried last year. But at least two sources (Jezebel Magazine and INsite Atlanta) say it’s Park Tavern. Located in Piedmont Park, the restaurant has incredible views of the park as well as the Atlanta skyline. It’s just a few paw prints over from a three-acre dog park where King of Pops serves dog popsicles on weekends.
Pro Tip: When it rains, Park Tavern pours hand-crafted beers for only $1.
Just north of the city in Sandy Springs, Perk-N-Pooch offers the unusual yet must-have experience of a coffee shop combined with a dog wash. Come sip a latte while watching your doggo get a bath and maybe a professional grooming, too. In summer months, try a milkshake made with lavender lemonade. You’ll both leave refreshed and ready for the next adventure.
This Latin-Asian fusion restaurant is a dog-lover’s paradise. For one, its VIP (Very Important Puppy) menu features natural, pup-approved ingredients like lean protein and fresh produce. There’s a starter, choice of entrée, and a dessert, so please don’t worry that your pooch will be bored with the lack of selection. Shrimp and grouper seafood casserole, perhaps? All sales from the puppy plates are donated to the local humane society. It’s something to feel good about as you deliberate between bulgogi tacos, pad Thai, or kimchi quesadillas.
Southern hospitality is what this place is all about, so it’s no surprise that extends to pets as well. Your pal will feel like canine royalty with complimentary doggie bones and a menu just for dogs (yes, there’s bacon). Meanwhile, you can indulge in upscale yet down-home dishes like fried green tomatoes with pepper jelly and goat cheese or Gulf Coast shrimp and grits. Chastain Park is just over a mile away if you need an after-meal stroll. Southern Bistro is the go-to spot for hosting doggie birthday parties, so start planning now. There’s Wi-Fi throughout and six TVs to keep you entertained, plus special events like comedy nights, a live music series and a monthly singles mingle.
Cheryl Rodewig is an award-winning journalist, specializing in travel for more than a decade. When she’s not planning her next trip—preferably to a waterfall or garden—she’s putting her MBA to use crafting marketing stories for brands. You can read her words in USA Today, The Guardian, Fodor’s, and all over cherylrodewig.com.